Inner City Press

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis

In Other Media-eg New Statesman, AJE, FP, Georgia, NYT Azerbaijan, CSM Click here to contact us     .


Share |   

Follow on TWITTER

More: InnerCityPro

Home -

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis


(FP Twitterati 100, 2013)

ICP on YouTube
Sept 24, 2013

UN: Sri Lanka


FOIA Finds  

Google, Asked at UN About Censorship, Moved to Censor the Questioner, Sources Say, Blaming UN - Update - Editorial

Support this work by buying this book

Click on cover for secure site orders

also includes "Toxic Credit in the Global Inner City"




Bank Beat

Freedom of Information

How to Contact Us

Ban Ki-moon's Weakness on Burundi Began in 2010, Record of Failure

By Matthew Russell Lee, Eighteenth in a Series

UNITED NATIONS, January 1 -- In the final days of Ban Ki-moon's decade as UN Secretary General, covering up genocides in Sri Lanka, Burundi and Yemen and evicting the Press which asked about (t)his corruption, Inner City Press is reviewing Ban's end, year by year. See also this Twitter Moment.

In 2009, Ban misspoke about his history in Sri Lanka, the mass killing in which he ignored to attend his son Woo-hyun's wedding, and where his son in law Siddharth Chatterjee had previously played an active, killing role.

While Ban would later evict and still restrict Inner City Press, in 2009 his strategy was to get it removed from Google News - and it happened (though it was later reversed). Here's Inner City Press' report from June 3, 2009.

 And now Ban threatens to sue, for ambition.

Ban's ambition, then as now, was about South Korea. And as far back as 2010, Ban was weak on Burundi. From Inner City Press' June 30, 2010 story:

"UNITED NATIONS, June 30 -- When an election on which the UN has spent years ends up with a single candidate and the opponent in hiding, and polling's marked with the deadly tossing of grenades, what does Secretary General Ban Ki-moon do? He “takes note” of the one party election, in this case in Burundi. But what does this mean?

On June 28, after Ban praised the referendum in Kyrgyzstan that was marked by ethnic cleansing then declined to take questions on his praise, Inner City Press asked his spokesman Martin Nesirky if Ban would also praise Burundi. We'll have something tomorrow, Nesirky said.

And indeed he did. In the opening of the June 29 noon briefing, Nesirky provided updates on two outstanding questions:

Yesterday I was asked about Burundi. The Secretary-General takes note of the presidential election that took place on 28 June. In regard to the rest of the electoral cycle, the Secretary-General calls on all Burundians, and their political parties, to continue settling their disputes through peaceful means and an inclusive dialogue, and he urges them to persist in consolidating national cohesion and their hard-won peace.

It goes without saying that a one party election is far less than ideal. And so Inner City Press asked Nesirky:

Inner City Press: I just wanted to follow up on these two announcements that you made on Burundi and Guinea-Bissau. In the Burundi election, there was only one candidate, and since then grenades have been thrown at the Electoral Commission, killing two people. You’re saying Ban Ki-moon takes note of it. What does that mean?

Spokesperson Nesirky: I said he took note of the presidential election.

Inner City Press: Is that some kind — “taking note” means he doesn’t view a one candidate’s election positively, or he views the throwing of grenades as unhelpful? What is he taking note of?

UN's Ban takes note of one party election in Burundi, grenade attacks not shown

Spokesperson: Of the presidential election that took place on 28 June. And what it also says — I can repeat it for you — is that he calls on all Burundians and their political parties to continue settling their disputes through peaceful means and inclusive dialogue; peaceful means and inclusive dialogue. And that’s a message that he took directly to the people, including the President, when he visited Bujumbura earlier this month.

Inner City Press: I was just wondering, maybe if you could get [inaudible] like at the Security Council, like taking note. Is he troubled by it? Is he concerned by it? Is he just aware of it? I just want, if you could give…

Spokesperson: Well, for now it says what it says, Matthew. It says what it says. There may be more coming from the Mission subsequently, but that’s what we’re saying at the moment. And importantly, he stressed on the spot, when he was there in Bujumbura, and he’s saying it again now, through me, as he is on his way to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, that this is a process after a conflict, and there needs to be some persistence here to work to consolidate national cohesion. No one is saying that they’re there yet. But they need to push ahead with that. And in doing so, they need to be as inclusive as possible. Okay, and you want to add something on Guinea-Bissau, did you say?

Inner City Press: No, I think it’s just you used exactly the same phrase, and it seems like, I think the question you were asked yesterday is whether the UN, which had expressed concern about this individual getting the post, is concerned now that the person has gotten the post. And I guess, I put the two together, maybe “taking note” means there is concern. I just wasn’t sure.

Spokesperson: Well, it’s not for me to try to parse or interpret the wording. I think, probably, I’d have to leave that to you. 

    So how should we interpret Ban's mere "taking note" of this UN's inability to positively impact even Burundi and Guinea Bissau? Watch this site."

 In 2006 after Ban was given the job since he was NOT “God's gift to humanity,” even then he was criticized for close business links with Myanmar, by Djoko Susilo among others.

As it turned out, Ban Ki-moon's brother Ban Ki-ho would do mining and other business in Myanmar, after being on a “UN delegation.” Ban Ki-moon's nephew Dennis Bahn is said to have used his uncle's name and position while trying to sell real estate in Vietnam. The Bans have yet to answer these questions. Here's the December 26 round-up story by Inner City Press.

  Now the South Korean media have picked up on Ban Ki-moon's nepotism as well, reporting that just after Ban Ki-moon "visited Korea at the invitation of the United Nations Global Compact Korea Association... his son Ban Woo-hyun was recruited by SK Telecom's New York office."

Inner City Press has been asking and reporting since 2009 about SK's Chey Tae-won being in the UN Global Compact, for example here.

It was in 2009 that mass killing by the Sri Lankan army against Tamils in the North was occurring. Inner City Press exposed how Ban's Secretariat was hiding the death figures; then amid pressure for him to visit Sri Lanka, Ban declined in order to attend the wedding of his son Ban Woo-hyun. See, Inner City Press of May 11, 2009. 

On the morning of December 28, 2016, Inner City Press asked Ban Ki-moon's top three spokespeople questions including

"Please state the date and separately content of the Secretary General's last three communications with Chey Tae-won or any other official or employee of SK Telecom, SK or any of their affiliates. Please confirm or deny that the Secretary General's son Ban Woo-hyun was hired at SK Telecom."

  Five hours later, the fully paid spokespeople closed their office without answering a single question, and while trying to keep "closed press" Ban's meeting with New York and US officials.

 This is entirely consistent with what Inner City Press has witnessed and reported on, leading to and after Ban Ki-moon's ouster and eviction of Inner City Press and restrictions since: nepotism. Like getting his son in law Siddharth Chatterjee hired in Copenhagen then giving him the top UN job in Kenya.

  Add to it - not (yet) noticed by the South Korean media, that SK Telecom's Chey Tae-won, who invited Ban, was previously convicted of fraud, NY Times here.

Another NY Times, on Ban's UN censorship.

Here's Chey Tae-won, whose SKT hired Ban Ki-moon's son, on UN TV, here.

Ban Ki-moon's son Ban Woo-hyun has worked for "a Middle East branch of a New York-based financial company." We'll have more on this.

On December 26 it was reported in South Korea that even while Ban Ki-moon was UN Secretary General, he received $30,000 from a businessman, in a restaurant. See here, including Park Yeon-cha (as well as Vietnamese minister Nguyen Dy Nien) with this quote:

""It would have been early 2007, shortly after Ban took office as Secretary General of the United Nations. New York has a restaurant owner who knows him well. Park called the owner of the restaurant and said, "If Ban comes to eat, give me $ 30,000 as a gift to celebrate the inauguration of the secretary general." In fact, we know that money was handed to Ban. ""

Did the UN's Office of Internal Oversight Services ever look into this? We're still waiting to hear from them. As to Ban Ki-moon's spokespeople, they have refused to answer Inner City Press' written questions back to November 25 about Ban Ki-ho, etc.

 Ban Ki-moon has largely been immune from accountability for ten years, due to a mixture of sycophantry and, when seen as necessary in 2016, censorship, eviction and restriction of the investigative Press. But  in 2017...

It is reported that Ban Ki-moon will push the button to drop the Times Square ball on New Years Eve, seemingly arranged by NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio's relentlessly pro UN Office of International Affairs (which never answered Inner City Press about any de Blasio position on Ban Ki-moon having shirked accountability for his UN bringing deadly cholera to Haiti.)

  But the moment that ball drops, Ban Ki-moon's legal immunity is over. We'll have more on this.

 In his first year, 2007, Ban Ki-moon bought in numerous South Korean staffers. Inner City Press asked and was told there was only one, then that there were five, including Kweon Ki-hwan.

Then Ban's spokespeople including Choi Soung-ha chastised Inner City Press for asking, and demanded that the names of 51 South Korea staffers of the Secretariat be removed from Inner City Press' reporting.

Ban's early censorship, which culminated in 2016 with Ban evicting Inner City Press through Cristina Gallach, audio here, and Inner City Press' camera being smashed.

  Inner City Press even before Ban's Day 1 asked about financial transparency. It would end, a decade later, with Ban refusing to say who paid for his travel, even what “carbon offsets” he supposed bought.

   On Ban's first day at work, after walking in with Vijay Nambiar who would go on to cover up genocide in Myanmar after participating in it in Sri Lanka in the White Flag Killings, Ban was asked about the death penalty (for Saddam Hussein) and replied that it is “up to member states.” His first spokesperson Michele Montas tried to repair the damage.

In late 2016 Inner City Press saw Montas in the UN, from the “focus booth” where it does what work it can after Ban and his Under Secretary General for Public Information Cristina Gallach evicted it from its long time UN office.


Meanwhile Kofi Annan's spokesman Stephane Dujarric, who played a role in the eviction, is bragging that he will remain. We'll have more on this.


Share |

* * *

These reports are usually also available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis.

Click here for Sept 26, 2011 New Yorker on Inner City Press at UN

Click for re Libya, Sri Lanka, UN Corruption

Feedback: Editorial [at]

UN Office: S-303, UN, NY 10017 USA

Reporter's mobile (and weekends): 718-716-3540

  Search  Search WWW (censored?)

Other, earlier Inner City Press are listed here, and some are available in the ProQuest service, and now on Lexis-Nexis.

            Copyright 2006-2016 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at]